A little more than two miles from San Diego via the San Diego-Coronado Bay Bridge is Coronado, a resort with a population hovering around 30,000 that attracts more than two million visitors annually.
While staying at the Glorietta Bay Inn's Mansion, which was built by John Dietrich Spreckels, the “Sugar Baron,” the history lesson began. His original home, today known as “The Mansion,” just celebrated its 100-year anniversary. Reminiscent of Italian renaissance in classical lines, it now has 11 spacious guestrooms, including a 1,000-square-foot, ultra private Solarium, each a story in itself. We stayed in the Coronado Suite with all the comforts of a luxury hotel, from fresh flowers and nightly turndown service to triple-sheeted beds with 300 thread count linens. There are 89 contemporary guestrooms in a garden setting, convenient parking and a continental breakfast daily starting at 7 a.m. It is a far cry from the hectic Hotel Del Coronado across the street but in its own way a magnet for weddings and anniversaries. Around the corner is another hidden gem, the charming 40-room El Cordova Hotel where Earl Winfield Spencer, the first husband of Wallis Warfield Simpson (eventually the Duchess of Windsor), died in 1950 due, some say, to a broken heart.
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